July 11, 2009
Ambrose Home & Happy
Praise the Lord! After an 8 hour visit to the hospital yesterday, we were finally able to bring Ambrose home. We were taught how to use the Oxygen tanks, Pulse Oximeter, and feeding pump. The day seemed to last forever. We were very anxious for the day to arrive, but the hours passed so slowly. We finally left around 6:00pm or so. While leaving the NICU was a wonderful thing, we also felt sad at the same time. We're glad to have our sweet little boys home, but we will miss all the incredible people we met...especially our primary nurses...Becky, Stephanie, & Terri. They made us feel comfortable and gave us the hope we needed during our long stay at St. Joseph's.
Because Ambrose was intubated for so long, he has developed an oral aversion, which means we have to take great care to provide positive feeding experiences for him so that he will overcome his aversion. So when it was time for Ambrose to have his first feeding at home, we were prepared for him not to take the bottle and just feed him through the G-tube. Well, to our surprise, he readily took all 90cc of his feeding from a bottle. He was so happy and comfortable while he ate. We were extremely surprised and pleased. During the night he is usually too sleepy to bottle feed, so we are feeding him slowly and continuously on the feeding pump.
Ambrose and Charles slept soundly through the night. I think they slept until nearly 8am! Our other two boys were staying at Grandma Iker's house so we could get familiar with all the equipment. The big boys came home today and we had to have a serious sitdown with them to explain the equipment and why we shouldn't swing on the IV pole. So far the IV pole is still intact and the prongs are still in Ambrose's nose. I do recall seeing some Legos soar over him, but they've all been accounted for now.
Since our little journey began when Gina's water broke December 16, we've had an incredible outpouring of love and prayers from friends, family, and many others that learned of our twins. God has really placed incredible people in our life. We still recall the horrible feeling hours after Ambrose was born when it looked like he wouldn't make it. As difficult as it was, we asked his neonatologist to please let us know when enough was enough, when no more would help so that we could say our final goodbye. The doctor told us that, at that moment, everything had been tried and he wasn't sure if Ambrose would make it. He said that the nurse was going to give him Epinephrine and if that didn't work we would just wait and see if his body would recover. The team stayed with Ambrose for hours trying to keep him breathing and his heart beating, but none showed that they were ready to give up on him. Not once did anyone in the NICU give us a reason to lose hope, especially when the situation appeared hopeless.
God worked wonders through and for the twins. It's humbling for us to think about all the people who spent time praying for our family and our little guys. We wish to thank everyone that helped us throughout these months. It's been incredibly stressful on us. The Devil would like to have had us give up a long time ago, to despair, but we couldn't have made it without all the prayers said for our family. We are grateful for all the Mass intentions and Prayers of the Faithful. Thanks to all of you who had Masses said for the boys, all of you priests who said Mass for them, and all the religious communities who have been praying for them, especially the Norbertines at St. Michael's Abbey (thanks to frater Benedict) and the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter (thanks to Father McCambridge). We thank all the prayer groups, pro-life groups and mother's groups, especially the Mothers Group at Our Lady of Mt Carmel! We also are grateful for all the rosaries said for the boys and know that Our Lady was always watching over Ambrose.
Please continue to keep us in your prayers. Ambrose still battles with the oral feedings and still relies on supplemental oxygen. He needs to eat so he can grow new lung tissue, and overcome his chronic lung disease.
God bless all of you.